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What Is Your Earliest Memory With Retouching?

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  #1  
Old 09-01-2011, 08:20 PM
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What Is Your Earliest Memory With Retouching?

I am curious to see where you all founded your love for photo retouching/ manipulating...


When I was thirteen years old I had a huge Hollywood crush on Orlando Bloom. At the time I had an old Windows 98 with Photoshop 2.0!! (Before Layers!!)

I would ask my dad to take a picture of me so I could digitally alter it. I learned how to cut out pictures of Orlando and place him next to me in the image. ( Granted the cutout was jagged and the result was terrible...) But that is when I began adventuring and experimenting... from then I got Photoshop 6, 7, CS, CS2, CS3, and now CS5!!

I loved retouching so much I have made a career out of it. I now work at the Victoria's Secret home office here in Columbus Ohio as a retoucher. And there's no turning back!


- Cheers!!

- Jessica
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Old 09-01-2011, 10:23 PM
Steve13 Steve13 is offline
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Re: What Is Your Earliest Memory With Retouching?

a 00 brush and a bottle of retouching fluid dabbing dust spots
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Old 09-01-2011, 11:36 PM
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Re: What Is Your Earliest Memory With Retouching?

Photoshop 2.5, circa-1991 or 92! I did some complicated collages using scans of my own and others' B&W photos, all without layers... And learned to spot my negative scans using the Rubber Stamp, mmm.
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Old 09-02-2011, 01:51 AM
Siciliana Siciliana is offline
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Re: What Is Your Earliest Memory With Retouching?

I started with learning all design software back in 1999 in order to work in print design for a family business. Of course, having a more traditional art background, I always loved photoshop most of all. The first time I discovered blend modes it felt like a miracle to play around with! I still remember the first photo collages I made, blending buddhas and lotus flowers and photos of beautiful Tibetan monestaries--I'm so California This was all about the same time I got a digital camera which felt like another miracle--I was going nuts taking photos of beautiful forms in nature and patterns I saw around me that I wanted to use in my design work... Of course that was back before there was so much cheap stock and images available on the web. 12 years later, I still love playing with photoshop. As for retouching, I have always retouched client photos in the brochures I design, but just lately started to realize that there are people who just work on the photos. I want that job instead. Much for fun than layout.

Jessica, I'd be happy to have your job, but I think it is kind of funny how many photoshop disasters end up in the VS catalog. Hopefully, they've raised their standards for authenticity.

Cheers!
Amy

p.s.
That's a cute story about you and Orlando.

Last edited by Siciliana; 09-02-2011 at 02:29 AM.
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Old 09-02-2011, 03:13 AM
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Re: What Is Your Earliest Memory With Retouching?

Learned retouching in the days where you couldn't avoid it. Masks (real masks), contrast masks, saturation masks, sandwiched masks, high contrast masks. And then brushes, leads, blades, airbrush (real airbrush), sand paper, yellow hands, brown hands, sparkling with lead nibs encrusted below the skin. Chemicals, cleaning, dusting, testing solutions, gang working, chatting with mates, coffee breaks.

Not necessarily saying "ah the good ol' days" but definitely "not alone in front of the computer days". More waste and trial and errors as well...

Then Photoshop 2.5.... and a scanner, and a printer, and a Wacom.
then never quit....

There was a time when you'd hear me say "these digital stuff they'll never land!" (stupid old grit!)
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Old 09-02-2011, 04:07 AM
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Re: What Is Your Earliest Memory With Retouching?

I started in 1997 with photoshop 3.0 and making cutout and change the background was a Magical job. tried to impress all of my family, friends and offcourse my clients..... that was a fun, bcoz there is no one who tells me that your cutout are bad and your colors does not matching with the image.
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Old 09-02-2011, 05:28 AM
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Re: What Is Your Earliest Memory With Retouching?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Steve13 View Post
a 00 brush and a bottle of retouching fluid dabbing dust spots
Nice! I have only experimented with actual Photograph retouching/ repairing in school and it was a looong and tedious job!
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Old 09-02-2011, 05:35 AM
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Re: What Is Your Earliest Memory With Retouching?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Siciliana View Post
I started with learning all design software back in 1999 in order to work in print design for a family business. Of course, having a more traditional art background, I always loved photoshop most of all. The first time I discovered blend modes it felt like a miracle to play around with! I still remember the first photo collages I made, blending buddhas and lotus flowers and photos of beautiful Tibetan monestaries--I'm so California This was all about the same time I got a digital camera which felt like another miracle--I was going nuts taking photos of beautiful forms in nature and patterns I saw around me that I wanted to use in my design work... Of course that was back before there was so much cheap stock and images available on the web. 12 years later, I still love playing with photoshop. As for retouching, I have always retouched client photos in the brochures I design, but just lately started to realize that there are people who just work on the photos. I want that job instead. Much for fun than layout.

Jessica, I'd be happy to have your job, but I think it is kind of funny how many photoshop disasters end up in the VS catalog. Hopefully, they've raised their standards for authenticity.

Cheers!
Amy

p.s.
That's a cute story about you and Orlando.

I actually laughed out loud about your Cali comment! So funny!

Once I got a digital camera I went off the wall as well... The easiest type of digital alteration is bad ones! So I have ample photo's of myself looking morbid/ dead. (a little heavy with the burn tool)

And YES! The VS catalog is a whole 'nother animal than what I do... They are cranking images out so quickly that they often end up very unproportionate and embarrassing. I deal with the In-Store images... (The giant windows with all the smexy ladies) So I am forced to pay a little more attention to detail, ha!

Thanks for the story!

- Jessica
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Old 09-02-2011, 09:24 AM
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Re: What Is Your Earliest Memory With Retouching?

Love the stories and thanks for sharing.

I have accumulated slides and negatives since 1972 with a Nikon F2. I avoided chemical darkrooms totally. My first digital retouching experience was when HP introduced their photo printer and slide/negative scanner in 1997 allowing affordable (for me) home digital darkroom work. My first retouching/restoration memory was that same year working on an image for my wife's parents 50th wedding anniversary. My parents-in-law knew each other since early childhood and the 1920s image was of the two of them (~3 years old) side by side in the park in front of a brick structure with my mother-in-law's brother standing next to her. It required scanning the original, editing our her brother, adding brick back in, normal tone adjustments (it was B&W), repairing image damage/dust, oval framing with the words "50 Years of Marriage" "75 Years of Friendship", printing, and picture framing. It is still on their mantel today
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Old 09-02-2011, 11:30 AM
Siciliana Siciliana is offline
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Re: What Is Your Earliest Memory With Retouching?

I like hearing the stories about the old-school retouching. It is amazing to think about what has taken place with the digital revolution. There really are limitless tools for creativity and the technology is so affordable compared to what it once was. My family owned a printing plant and ran a local newspaper. I grew up hanging out with my mom in the big room where the layout artists did the paste-up of the paper. This was in the 1970s and early 80s. They had a typesetting machine, clip art books, and some of the artwork was done by hand with pen and ink. I remember all those little spools of borders, exacto knives, etc. I first learned Quark Express, but the tools available in InDesign, not to mention the kinds of printing we have available now are pretty incredible for creating printed materials. There is so much we can do now that was impossible a few years back. Digital cameras? Totally amazing to me, still--I could never afford the film for all the photos I have taken in the last couple of years.

On the other hand, I think computers have made work more solitary and obviously less hands on. I hate sitting alone with my computer, even though I am lucky to have podcasts, skype, radio, netflix, etc. to keep my mind busy when I am working. I do miss physically manipulating things. That is why I still prefer traditional media for making artwork. I love the look of light reflected off of paper, vs. looking at a monitor. I'd rather be a painter than a retoucher. My dad was a photographer and had a dark room. I remember hanging out with him in there and there was a certain magic to developing negatives and waiting to find out how the shots came out. I'd actually like to get back into film photography if I had the time and money to do it.

I am grateful for the tools, and the learning resources available on the internet--it is really incredible and something we should be grateful for. I lived in the Indian Ocean and Africa for a few years recently and they still do not have affordable high-speed internet. When I got back to SF, I was like a giant sponge soaking up everything I could learn online. I still love thinking of new ways to create effects and solve problems in photoshop. I know illustrator really well, but I just am not that compelled to create vector artwork--it is not as fun to me. For me, the real fun is the interaction of light and color you get in PS that is so subtle and fun to manipulate. I find myself looking at a retouch the same way I look at a painting... a little more of this here, a little more of that there, draw this out, minimize that, trying to figure out when it is done or when you've gone to far. Thankfully, unlike a painting, you have layers and can easy undo something you did that you change your mind about later I am infinitely grateful to the creators of photoshop for giving us such a wonderful too!
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